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NEWS
8/8/17
THE SHEIK WILL TAKE THE HIT ME AMERICA CHALLENGE AT A LOCAL NEW ORLEANS CHURCH
On Sunday, August 20th, Michael "The Sheik" O'Hara will take the Hit Me America Challenge to write a hit song with his fans and audience members at St. James Church of God in Christ.  Michael will have just 30 minutes to write the song with his audience who will inspire the songwriting jam session.  
More Info

7/4/17
ELI SEALS TO PERFORM IN JAM SESSION AT THE LEGENDARY BUFFALO CHIP
Eli Seals and his band will take the Hit Me America challenge at the Legendary Buffalo Chip in Sturgis, South Dakota during the Light Up the Hills Rally.  Eli will attempt to write a hit song at the Crossroads Bar with the help of bikers from across America.  Filmmaker Steven Scaffidi will be shooting a documentary of his experience at the event.
Sing, Pledge & Pray

5/15/17
"HARD TIMES" WINS AT 2017 INTERNATIONAL CHRISTIAN FILM FESTIVAL
Ghost Rider's latest documentary "Hard Times Don't Hit Me No More" wins for Most Creative Documentary at the 2017 Christian International Film Festival. The film was also selected to screen at the 2017 First Glance Los Angeles Film Festival and was nominated for Best Documentary.
Watch Film


3/3/17
The documentary "Hard Times Don't Hit Me No More", following the groundbreaking jam session to write the song with the homeless at the New Orleans Mission, has been selected to screen at the First Glance Los Angeles Film Festival 2017 in Hollywood, California.  The film will screen in late April (20-23) at the historic Laemmle Theatre and was one of only four short docs selected for the festival.
First Glance Los Angeles Official Selections

1/12/17
Q.D. Hix, President of the Fellowship of Motorcycle Ministries announced that the powerful country anthem "Sing, Pledge & Pray" by the Eli Seals Band has been adopted as the Official Anthem for Christian Bikers across America.  Eli and his band will perform at the First Annual Light Up the Hills Rally in Sturgis, South Dakota on July 6th. 
Read More

11/7/16
Hit Me America releases a ground breaking R&B song by Terry Gillis who at one time was homeless and on the streets of New Orleans.  Terry's powerful vocals drives this bluesy passionate ballad which was written in a unique jam session with a packed house of co-writers at the New Orleans Jazz Market.
Download the Song

10-28-16
Legendary Louisiana Entertainer Rockin' Dopsie Jr teams up with Top Louisiana Country Artist Eli Seals and New Orleans Piano Man John Autin to participate in a one-of-a-kind Hit Me America Jam Session. The Jam Session will be featured in a Live Auction at the New Orleans Mission's 3rd Annual Gala on Friday, November 4th at the Super Dome Hyatt Regency Hotel. The song will be recorded at Rabadish Studios in Covington, LA, registered with BMI, published, and released through Hit Me America with 100% of all downloads and sales going to the New Orleans Mission  to help "Change the Face of Homelessness" in the local community and across America.  
See More

8-10-16
ELI SEALS RELEASES TWO NEW SONGS ON HIT ME AMERICA
"Sing, Pledge & Pray", a powerful anthem saluting America's Veterans, and "Mary's Landing", written in a most unique jam session with the locals at The Landing Bar & Grill in Slidell, Louisiana, are two of the latest from the Eli Seals Band.  100% of the download royalties from "Sing, Pledge & Pray" will go to benefit Homeless Veterans.  On Saturday, August 20th, "Mary's Landing" will be released at the honky tonk that inspired the song.  
Eli Seals Band Website 

3-29-16
FILMMAKER STEVE SCAFFIDI FINDS A NEW MISSION
The latest venture tugging at his heartstrings is working with the New Orleans Mission and reaching the homeless through music.
Read More

3-16-16
MONICA PIERRE INTERVIEWS STEVE SCAFFIDI ON WWL RADIO
From Mission Jam Sessions to The Big Easy Big Heart and more...Scaffidi talks about his passion for music, events, and helping change the face of homelessness.
Listen to Interview

2-9-16
JAM SESSION AT THE NEW ORLEANS MISSION - Every Wednesday at the the New Orleans Mission the best Louisiana artists and national artists traveling through the city are invited to jam with the homeless in an unforgettable jam session unlike any other.  Every event is open to the public and all artists who want to jam with the homeless to lift the spirits of the community.
See Video

1-22-16
NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) - If one man has his wish, you could someday see Robert Plant, for free, while dancing with homeless people.
See Video & Read More

11-9-15
NEW RELEASE:  "CELEBRATE THE DAY" PUSHES THE CREATIVE ENVELOPE
This new song by Aziza & the Cure mixes influences from Classical, Folk, Jazz, and Latin music traditions to create a transcendent blend of Orchestral Pop. Led by a couple bent on intelligent optimism, their music evokes an earthly paradise with cascading strings, angelic voices, and uplifting themes. 
Download the song

9-23-15
ROBIN ROBERTS BLOG:  "FIGHTING HOMELESSNESS WITH THE BLUES"
by Andrea Israel
“There but for the grace of God…” the disheveled man said as he looked pointedly at those who refused to make eye contact in the morning rush hour of a New York City subway car. A tight space filled to capacity with commuters heading to work and parents taking kids to school, every seat taken, every pole and bar a stack of hands gripping to help maintain balance as the subway jerked and lurched uptown.
Read More

7-24-15
LOCAL SLIDELL WOMAN HAS HAND IN COMPOSING SONG FOR CHARITY
The Times Picayune
by Marilou Horton
Last summer Slidell resident and music enthusiast Debbie Pennington was definitely in the right place at the right time.  Read More

7-14-15
LOCAL MUSICIANS GIVE HOMELESS AN OPPORTUNITY TO GET IN ON THE ACT
The Advocate
by Christine Gacharna
The familiar noise of freeway traffic overhead and sirens in the distance were recently interrupted for homeless residents by the pulsing sounds of popular local musicians performing inside the New Orleans Mission.  Read More

6-2-15
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Louisiana Musicians Collaborate with Homeless in Unique Songwriting Jam Session

WHO: The New Orleans Mission featuring Rockin’ Dopsie Jr. and friends along with Ewell Smith and homeless citizens.

WHAT: The New Orleans Mission will host a unique Hit Me America jam session featuring popular Louisiana artists including Rockin’ Dopsie Jr., Eli Seals, Scott Lee Tully, John Autin, Reed Alleman and other top singer/songwriters who will assist Mission volunteer and songwriter, Ewell Smith and an audience filled with homeless people in writing a hit song. Audience members are encouraged to toss out story lines, lyrics, melodies or anything else to help inspire the songwriters to accomplish their goal of writing a hit song in the allotted time of one hour.

During the songwriting session the Mission’s chef will create the “Hit Me Hot Meal.” The “Hit Me Hot Meal” will become part of the New Orleans Mission menu. Hit Me America and The Mission hope that this interactive music experience will set the stage for similar jam sessions in homeless facilities across the country.

WHEN: Tuesday, June 16, 2015
  2 pm - 5 pm

WHERE: The New Orleans Mission
  1134 Baronne Street, New Orleans, LA 70113

WHY: New Orleans Mission Director, David Bottner said, “We’re excited to host Hit Me America jam session. We talk about the three “Rs”. We rescue the folks off the street. We help them recover. And we help reengage them into the community. The Hit Me America jam session is a special event at the Mission and it makes sense for it to happen in New Orleans. The jam session will bring excitement within the community and awareness so we can further help our homeless community.”

Established in 1989, the New Orleans Mission is a nonprofit service provider for a growing population of homeless persons, and the largest faith based private service provider among 60 shelters in New Orleans. For more information about the New Orleans Mission, visit www.neworleansmission.org and connect by visiting Facebook. 

Media Contact:

Veronica Ridgley
Gambel Communications
504-324-4242 | 504-723-0726
veronica@gambelpr.com
See Video

5-22-15
THE NEW ORLEANS MISSION HOSTS A UNIQUE HIT ME AMERICA JAM SESSION
On Tuesday, June 16th, a most unique songwriting jam session will take place at the New Orleans Mission featuring top Louisiana songwriters collaborating with an audience filled with homeless citizens from the local community.  Read More

5-14-15
TWO NEW HIT ME AMERICA SONGS RELEASED TODAY 
"REBOUND ROAD TRIP" written by TJ Zino, Todd Adams and Josh Sharrard, with the fans at Spirits on Bourbon during Mardi Gras in New Orleans. This big-sounding anthem was produced, recorded, mixed and mastered by Adam Hains. "DARE ME" is a soulful rock ballad written by Brett Weller and his wife Anna with the fans at Mizado Cocina and recorded at Restoration Church.
Download

4-12-15
"HOT LOVE SUNDAE" AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD
Lafayette, LA singer/songwriter Scott Lee Tully wrote this upbeat country rocker with the audience at the historic Morning Call Coffee Stand in New Orleans City Park.  The song is registered with BMI and is available on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, CD Baby and all other major music distribution platforms.
Download

3-28-15
ELI SEALS AND LYNN DRURY JAM SESSIONS COMING SOON
On Sunday, April 12th The Landing Bar & Grill in Slidell, LA will host Eli Seals and his Band and on Wednesday, April 15th Cafe Istanbul will host Lynn Drury.
Read More

2-10-15
NOLA DEFENDER: HIT ME WITH YOUR BEST SONG
By Ashley Rouen
The ultimate songwriting challenge is back for a Mardi Gras special. Hit Me America Jam Session features some of Louisiana’s top songwriters, who participate in writing a hit song with the help of a live audience in one hour. This installment of the series will be held at Spirits on Bourbon (2.11), where dueling pianists TJ Zino & Todd Adams will be put to the test.
Read More

2-6-15
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 6, 2015

Top songwriters to team up with music fans in a unique Jam Session to write a hit song while a star bartender creates an original signature drink inspired by the music.

NEW ORLEANS – On the Wednesday before Mardi Gras, Spirits on Bourbon will host a Hit Me America Jam Session where dueling piano wizards TJ Zino & Todd Adams are put to the ultimate test of writing a hit song with music fans…the audience.  

Producers are calling this unique event the ultimate interactive music experience and are inviting anyone who loves music to be part of the audience who will become the co-writers of an actual song. The goal: To write a hit song! The event will be filmed for Television and You Tube by local production company Ghost Rider Pictures.

Both Zino and Adams will face the ultimate challenge of their careers as they must allow the audience to take the lead in the songwriting process and be inspired by the crowd of co-writers. Nothing is off limits for the audience members who are encouraged to toss out story lines, lyrics, melodies or anything else to help the songwriters accomplish their goal of writing a hit song in the allotted time of 1 hour.

During the songwriting session one of Spirits’ top bartenders will also be challenged to come up with an original signature drink which is inspired by the song. That drink will become part of Spirits’ drink menu and will be called the “Spirits’ HIT ME HIGHBALL” which customers can order by simply saying “Hit Me!”  

Producers will donate 20% of all music royalties that the song generates to Michelle’s Place Breast Cancer Resource Center. Spirits on Bourbon will also donate 100% of all Hit Me Highball sales generated that night.

Following the event the song will be registered with BMI and released on all music platforms including ITunes, Amazon, Google Play, Spotify and more with the ultimate goal of getting on the radio. Future jam sessions will feature top Nashville singer/songwriter Thom Shepherd, and popular Louisiana singer/songwriter Lynn Drury among others.

For more information, please visit www.hitmeamerica.com
Contact: Steven Scaffidi, email: stevenscaffidi@gmail.com phone: 504-669-0189

WHAT: Hit Me America Jam Session featuring TJ Zino & Todd Adams.
WHEN: Wednesday, February 11, 2015
TIME: 6pm-9pm
WHERE: Spirits on Bourbon, 615 Bourbon Street, New Orleans, LA 70130

2-2-15:
TOP NASHVILLE ARTIST COMING WILL TAKE THE HIT ME AMERICA CHALLENGE
Thom Shepherd, writer of the #1 smash country hit "Redneck Yacht Club" will be coming to Grits Bar on Thursday, March 5th, to write a hit song with the audience as his co-writer.  
More info

1-23-15:
LYNN DRURY TO ROCK CAFE' ISTANBUL
Popular singer/songwriter Lynn Drury will team up with the audience at Cafe' Istanbul in what could be one of the biggest challenges of her career as she attempts to write a hit song with the audience.  Audience members will also be the first to experience the Cafe' Istanbul Hit Me Highball to be created by a star bartender at the event.
Buy Advance Tickets

1-18-15:
TWO NEW JAM SESSIONS FEATURING YOUNG UP AND COMING SONGWRITERS
On Saturday, February 28th, Aziza & the Cure (Bradley Rouen and Joelle Britt out of New York) will be featured at a home jam session in Metaire, LA. This is a private by invitation only event. Then on Sunday, March 1st, Brett Weller and his wife Anna will jam at Mizado's Cocina in New Orleans. Advance tickets for the Mizado Jam Session are now on sale.  The Mizado event will also unveil the Mizado Hit Me Highball created by one of Mizado's top bartenders. 
Tickets

12-8-14:
INTRODUCING THE "HIT ME HIGHBALL"
Trademark signature drinks created with every song at every event. Nothing goes better with a great song than a great drink!
More

11-11-14:
CUMULUS EMBRACES EASY BREEZY
The radio station giant welcomes "Easy Breezy" to their family of stations in Lafayette, LA on KSMB 94.5, KNEK Magic 104.7, KRRQ Q95.5, and NASH FM 99.1.
KSMB Website

11-6-14:
WGNO NEWS
New Saints Anthem "Easy Breezy"
by Kenny Lopez

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) - There have been a lot of songs written about our beloved New Orleans Saints. Now there’s a new one called, “Easy Breezy“, and it might just be the catchy tune that we all will be cheering along to in the Superdome! Steven Scaffidi of Ghost Rider Pictures created a project called “Hit Me America”. “Easy Breezy” is the first song. “Hit Me America” is about writing great songs and it puts the songwriters with an audience to come up with a song in one hour.
See Video

10-30-14:
WWL RADIO COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF
Former Saints' quarterback Bobby Hebert and co-host Deke Bellevia interview Steven Scaffidi about the excitement "Easy Breezy" is creating around the Who Dat Nation.
Interview 

10-27-14:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Contact: Staci Arceneaux
(504) 896-9375

First song written by top Louisiana Songwriters and Children’s Hospital patients to be released with the hopes of turning around the Saints season and uplifting the entire Who Dat Nation

NEW ORLEANS – The first song written by top songwriters and their fans, "Easy Breezy", will be released to the general public and the entire Who Dat Nation on Thursday, October 30th at Bobby Hebert’s Cajun Cannon Restaurant and Bar during a special event from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. before the 
Saints / Panthers game on national TV. All proceeds from the release of the song will benefit Children’s Hospital and Team Gleason.

Back in September, in a most unique songwriting session at Children’s Hospital, top Louisiana songwriter/musicians, Rockin’ Dopsie Jr, Steve Blaze, Lynn Drury and Scott Lee Tully teamed up with Children’s Hospital patients and audience members to write the song “Easy Breezy”, an uplifting anthem inspired by local Who Dat fan Debbie Pennington. The songwriters and producers of “Easy Breezy” will unveil the song for the first time during the event prior to releasing the song regionally and nationally. 

“Easy Breezy” is a wonderful gumbo of genres featuring Dopsie's unique Zydeco influence and off the charts energy, Blaze's bad to the bone Rock and Roll, Drury's heartfelt Soul and Grit, and Tully's smooth Americana/Country sound. Everyone involved with this unique project hopes that the song will not only raise funds for Children’s Hospital and Team Gleason, but will help turn around the Saints season and inspire the entire Who Dat Nation. The event is free and open to the entire family and everyone is encouraged to participate in this unique interactive musical experience by bringing a small percussion instrument of any kind and jamming with the artists.  

For more information, please visit www.hitmeamerica.com. 

WHAT:EASY BREEZY RELEASE BENEFITING CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL 
AND TEAM GLEASON
WHEN: Thursday, October 30h, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
WHERE: Bobby Hebert’s Cajun Cannon Restaurant and Bar
4401 Veterans Blvd., Metairie, LA, 70006
WHY: To release a song to inspire the Who Dat Nation & raise funds for 
Children’s Hospital & Team Gleason 

9-15-14​​:
LA VIE DE VILLE: ONE SONG - TWO CAUSES
By: Roberta Grove
The Advocate

Recently, some of Louisiana’s most talented songwriters and musicians joined forces with the general public for a first-time public jam session. The session with a mission was held in the auditorium at Children’s Hospital with one goal — to write a hit single in just one hour.  Read More

8-21-14:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
TOP LOUISIANA SONGWRITERS TO COLLABORATE WITH CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL PATIENTS, FAMILIES, STAFF, AND WHO DAT NATION FANS ON A NEW SONG TO KICK OFF THE 2014 FOOTBALL SEASON

NEW ORLEANS, LA August 21, 2014

Children’s Hospital and Team Gleason will participate in one of the most unique music events ever. The HIT ME AMERICA: “EASY BREEZY” JAM SESSION will feature top Louisiana Songwriters/Musicians who will collaborate with patients, families, hospital staff and other audience members on writing a song that’s inspired by local fans and dedicated to the entire Who Dat Nation to kick off the 2014 football season.  

The goal of this one-of-a-kind event is to finish the song “Easy Breezy”, which began when Who Dat fan, Debbie Pennington, yelled out a story line at the Hit Me America Showcase just a few weeks ago at Republic New Orleans. Rockin’ Dopsie, Jr., Vince Vance, and Steve Blaze along with several other talented Louisiana songwriter/musicians picked up on the line and began coming up with some lyrics and a melody. After only a few minutes, the beginning of the very first audience/musician collaborative songwriting session began.  

This unique music and songwriting experience will be the first Hit Me America Louisiana Jam Session, and will take place on Thursday, September 4th, at 6 PM in the Children’s Hospital Auditorium. The event is open to all media personnel and a limited number of Who Dat Nation fans. Requests for admission by the general public should be sent via email to: hitmeamerica@gmail.com. More Louisiana Jam Sessions featuring other top Louisiana songwriters are currently in the planning stages for this year with both Children’s Hospital and Team Gleason on board as charity partners who will benefit from any potential profits from music royalties generated by the songs which are created by the artists and the audience.

Steven Scaffidi, owner of Ghost Rider Pictures and creator/executive producer of Hit Me America, says: “Our goal is to challenge the top songwriters in Louisiana to write a song…a hit song. And to make things even more interesting, these talented artists must write the song with the audience, who will become the co-writers, and they only get one hour to do it! We want to take the audience behind the curtain of the music business and allow them to actually be part of writing a great song.”

Local music producer/publisher Brad Bohannan will oversee the songwriting session which will feature Dopsie and other top Louisiana songwriters. Brad’s job is to get the most out of the songwriters and the audience, and to produce a great song that will actually be heard and hopefully generate revenues. If the song is successful, the audience will take the ride while Children’s Hospital and Team Gleason benefit from all profits generated by potential music royalties. 

HIT ME AMERICA: THE “EASY BREEZY” JAM SESSION
Where: Children’s Hospital Auditorium
200 Henry Clay Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118
When: Thursday, September 4, 2014, Time: 6 PM 
Website: www.hitmeamerica.com

For more information contact:

Cathleen Randon
Director of Public Affairs
crandon@chnola.org

7-21-14:
NOLA DEFENDER
by Ashley Rouen

Smash into the Republic this Wednesday at 7 p.m.for the premier of an upcoming series called the HIT ME AMERICA Louisiana Jam Sessions. Co-hosted by Rockin’ Dopsie, Jr., the songwriters’ showcase will premiere eighteen individual musicians whose challenge is to write a hit song in one hour with the help of a live audience. Producer Steven Scaffidi has teamed up with the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame to film Wednesday’s event as well as subsequent jams, all eventually set for broadcast.  Read More

7-18-14:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

TOP LOUISIANA SONGWRITER/MUSICIANS TO PERFORM AT THE HIT ME AMERICA SHOWCASE

NEW ORLEANS, LA JULY 18, 2014 

The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame has joined with New Orleans producer Steven Scaffidi (Ghost Rider Pictures) to present a series of the most unique and creative music events ever: The HIT ME AMERICA Louisiana Jam Sessions. The Jam Sessions' Songwriters' Showcase premiere event will take place at Republic New Orleans on Wednesday, July 23rd at 7PM. Co-hosted by Rockin’ Dopsie, Jr., and featuring popular Louisiana songwriter/musicians including: Steve Blaze (Lillian Axe), Vince Vance, Lynn Drury, Christian Serpas and Reed Alleman, who are up for the challenge of their careers.  

Eighteen of the best and the bravest songwriter/musicians Louisiana has to offer have been invited to perform live on stage to introduce and kick off the most unique songwriting challenge yet conceived. This special event will introduce a select group of Louisiana artists embarking on a musical adventure where they will be teamed up with new writing partners: fans. The one goal: To write a hit song, together: in one hour!  

This unique music experience is called the "Louisiana Jam Sessions,” where each artist will write a potential hit song in one hour with the help of the audience. Each “Jam Session” song will be submitted to record companies, producers, star talent, etc. in an honest attempt to turn the song into a hit. If successful, the audience and their chosen charity will take the ride with the artist. Producers promise that every song will be promoted for a chance at success and, no matter what happens, every song will be released in some form.

Louisiana Music Hall of Fame Executive Director Mike Shepherd says, “This is the wildest music event I’ve ever been involved with. The beauty of this concept is that it takes the audience behind the scenes of the songwriting process and actually gives them an opportunity to be part of not only creating the song but taking the ride along with the artist. It’s a great opportunity for everyone! This is out-of-the-box thinking at its' best."

HIT ME AMERICA: THE LOUISIANA JAM SESSION SONGWRITERS’ SHOWCASE
Where: Republic New Orleans, 828 South Peters Street, New Orleans, LA 70130
When: Wednesday, July 23, 2014, Time: 7PM
Website: www.hitmeamerica.com

For more information contact:

Mike Shepherd
Executive Director, The Louisiana Music Hall of Fame
Phone: 225-937-1298
Email: mike@lmhof.org

Steven Scaffidi
Ghost Rider Pictures
Phone: 504-669-0189
Email: stevenscaffidi@gmail.com



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